Production of tomatoes in Baja California is expected to increase with warmer weather due to arrive in the next week. Just like its neighbor to the north, Baja California has been experiencing cooler than normal temperatures in recent weeks, resulting in a slowdown in production. Growers are expecting this to change though and anticipate stronger volumes soon.
"Things have been a bit slow in terms of production recently, with the cooler weather in Baja," shared Felipe Garcia of Master's Touch. "But production should start picking up by next week as we are expecting warmer weather to arrive."
He added that the company is currently working on their spring crop. "We have two seasons for our Roma and Vine-ripened tomatoes," he said. "Our spring season goes from the end of April until the end of July, and the fall season spans from the end of October through to mid-January, although we do produce grape and cherry tomatoes year-round. Our tomatoes are all grown in a shade house environment."
Stand-up resealable packaging
Master's Touch has a line of grape tomatoes under the label "Desert Jewels". These are available in both conventional and organic and the company introduced a new style resealable package around two years ago. The two package sizes are 10.5oz and 6oz, with 12 bags per case. One point of difference is that they are vertically-oriented and stand up. Apart from the new package, Desert Jewels are also available in a 20lb bulk box. Garcia also shared the other packaging options the company has.
"Our standard tomato packaging includes a 25lb box for both Roma and Vine-ripened tomatoes, with the latter also available in 2- or 3- layer tray," he said. "For grape tomatoes, we have 12x 1 pint clamshells and a 20lb bulk box."
Termination of Tomato Suspension Agreement
As has been heavily reported, the United States withdrew from the Tomato Suspension Agreement on May 7. This has created much uncertainty in the tomato industry in North America, especially for those that deal with Mexican-grown tomatoes. For Master's Touch, the effects are yet to play out and it will be some time before we find out how much of an effect it will have on Mexican tomato imports into the United States.
"For this year, we are eager to see what will happen with the market now that the Tomato Suspension Agreement has been terminated," Garcia shared. "In the meantime, we will continue to focus on growing our tomatoes and providing our customers with our products. In October, we also look forward to exhibiting at PMA in Anaheim."